My soft bits came in! I haven't tried smoking with one yet, but I put a few on a couple pipes. So much more comfortable now! This is going to be a big help for me now.
I'm at the opposite end of the tunnel, where a pipe stem without a bit feels weird. Now I won't smoke a pipe without one. Took a while to get used to them though. Like driving a car with a really soft suspension.It's been a bit since I've been here. Well, I've been smoking less pipes this past winter. But the weather has changed, and those lovely briars and cobs are again starting to see the light of day. Once again, porch sitting weather is at hand!
The other reason I've backed off the pipes is now the stems feel a bit weird in my teeth. The rubber bits help quite a bit. Definitely took it from uncomfortable to weird. But I'm determined to get over that this porch season.
In other news, I've really taken to St. Bruno (the ribbon cut). I think I've found the secret to dark fired Kentuck, mix it with stuff! Like whatever they've mixed it with. It gave me a warm familiar feeling like deja vu in a pleasant way. Like Carter Hall made with Kentucky instead of non fired burley. It packs a pleasant punch and I can see how it's someone's all day smoke. Like introducing a whiskey drinker to scotch.
It was the taste that was offputting for me. I believe there are silicone ones out there, which may be more neutral, but the rubber bites I tried were awful.